Ecovillages.io - the best thing on (and off) Steem!

Ecovillages.io is the most exciting project on the blockchain ATM, IMO.

@eco-alex seems to be the guy who initiated the project, so kudos to him, although there’s plenty of other people involved.

Screenshot 20191202 at 15.23.14.png

The general idea is to fund the development of a network of eco-villages through the sale of the ecovillage coin to investors, which you can buy right now on steem-engine. I just bought a few myself.

What I especially like about this project is that it’s a real world use case for the Steem blockchain – using a Steem backed token to ‘disrupt the cost of living industry’, with the purpose of helping people to transition out of the usual high wage-high cost of living lifestyle into to a low-cost eco-friendly self-sufficient lifestyle.

I think the plan is that the initial investment in the ecovillage coin acts as seed money for land purchase and then people come together and build their own earth-ships, and from there establish land-based and virtual businesses to generate an income to buy back the ecovillage tokens and provide a return on investment, with a certain amount of income serving to fund further land purchase and carry on the ‘cost of living industry disruption’ process.

If I've understood this correclly, then It’s an amazing idea:

With land, community, free labour, and time, the construction of earth ships and attendant eco-infrastructure (trees/ off-grid energy/ yogalates) we remove the mainstays of what I’ve long called (following Early Retirement Extreme guru Jacob Lund Fisker) ‘the lock-in’ – we remove the need for a mortgage, the need for individualized forms of transport (because people work on site), the need for high energy costs, and the need to pay for leisure, because meaningful work and community remove the false distinction between work and leisure.

And all this made global and virtuously cyclical via a blockchain.

Turns out that the project has recently had a boost by being gifted land from @orlev and according to the roadmap actual physical construction starts in Autumn next year.

Screenshot 20191202 at 15.22.47.png

I’d actually watched a few videos by @orlev on YouTube (sss) without even realising he was on Steem, so imagine my surprise when this link unfolded. He's just started doing live streams about Permaculture and his homesteading vision, which are worth checking out:


Harking back to my PhD

The ecovillage.io project actually reminds me of my abandoned PhD (almost 20 years ago now!) in sociological terms, this project, besides being eco-friendly, seems to offer people a real chance to ‘decolonise their lifeworlds’ (following Habermas) in that it ... (ready for this, irritating academic quote coming up….)

‘challenges the environmentally destructive, inegalitarian distributive, alienating, centralising, rationalising, oppressive, homogenising, hierarchical, individualising, irresponsible and destabilising logics of a globalising political and economic system and corporate-lead media messages which encourage individuals to adopt a number of systems-legitimating identities as...

  1. consumers, purchasing not only unnecessary items, but also accepting that they should consume as individuals via market mechanisms
  2. as responsible reflexive actors dependent on expert advice and welfare systems
  3. as largely passive political agents who limit their political agency to voting infrequently
  4. as full-time career oriented individuals, needing to retrain to orient themselves to a volatile, unstable labour market
  5. as vulnerable, in need of therapeutic (expert) assistance and
  6. and as privatised, seeking meaning in family and friendship relationships which are fundamentally mediated by consumption practices.

In contrast, eco-villages have the potential to articulate a critique of the scale, structures and logics of the global capitalist political economy and disrupt the way in which global capitalism reproduces itself in the minds of individual identities at the level of the lifeworld.'

That was actually a slice of my PhD upgrading paper, and TBH reading it back I’m

  1. A bit embarrassed because I’m obviously trying way too hard to sound academic
  2. Kind of glad I had to quit shortly afterwards because I couldn’t afford to carry on.

I think these days I’d be more inclined to say that this eco-village project looks nice because it’s just a bit more human than interaction as usual in mainstream society!

NB

I'm not saying ecovillage.io actually stands for any of that (but it seems to on reading through the website), moreover (and importantly) it actually seems MUCH more focused on just the positivity of getting building an alternative and letting the critique take care of itself, which is easier on the head, heart and spirit, and which I'm totally down with these days!

A volunteering opportunity next autumn...?

If yer interested in volunteering to help build an earth ship later this year, this looks like a great opportunity!

I’m actually currently planning on getting the fuck out of England and probably head to Portugal anyway from spring/ summer next year anyway, and this looks like the best possible place to go! If they'll have me, I've no idea how open the invites are gonna be, and its not as if I've got any building skills - but I'm fairly sure I can figure out how to ram earth into tyres and the rest will just follow...


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  • @eco-alex

    thank you so much for focussing on this! I feel your passion too, and that makes me happy!

    THere is SO much to talk about really, and you mention a lot of things! Some very nice news is that the land is already now secured due to the natural giving by Orlev and his friend Shir.. SO the investments from ecoVillage coin will go in to some basic things initially, probably mostly legal fees and getting the company set up properly...

    we have our first event lined up for mid 2020, which will be a fundraising healing dance festival on the land itself in Portugal.. more on that soon!..

    There are four of us working on this right now, and we will be posting soon with some more in depth info on the vision and some of the details!

    and thanks and congrats on getting some ecoVillage coin! thanks again, great post!

  • @stortebeker

    Oh man, I remember seeing you on Steem before, and I'm surprised to find that I still haven't followed you... till now. I totally share your excitement, and I agree that this EcoVillage project is the most interesting thing on (and off) the blockchain. I also appreciate your academic quote, though it does sound pretentious for normal ears. Reminds me how I once thought I wanted to be one, and it took me till the end of my undergrad studies to realize that I really don't want it, at least not like it's practiced. Anyway, I'm looking forward to working together in Portugal, and until then reading your posts. Cheers!

  • @shanibeer

    This is so interesting, the principles behind this project as well as the project itself ... although I agree with getting on with something practically and letting the critique take care of itself, at the same it is helpful (to me) to have the critique set out in your quote ... i have been thinking about the split between commissioning (broadly, capitalist model) and co-production (broadly, socialist model) and how we explicate that (at work) so we can see what we are trying to do ... and explain it to others. I also think there is a model here that we could develop/adapt/customise to what we are trying to do and how we might use the blockchain to do it. Yes, I've definitely missed you and your insights 😎. I don't always comment, but your posts do often help me to think in new ways about knotty problems. Thank goodness you're writing again. I could have fallen off the world!

  • @polyinnovator

    You should really credit the The Venus Project for using their photo on your website.

  • @vibeof100monkeys

    Sounds like a great project would like to know more (in layman's terms haha). Take it there is not a plan to do anything in the UK? Where about are you? I would love to get out of here soon. I want to set up a mental health center using earthship buildings and holistic therapies 💯🐒

  • @artemislives

    Enjoying your enthusiasm and joy - yes, ecovillages.io is an awesome concept and literally changing the world. #new paradigm.

    Curating this post for our Eco Village News which comes out on Fridays. :)


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